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Consumer Trust in Robot-Piloted Spacecraft – IEEE Survey

IEEE has announced results of a recent survey which found more than half (53 percent) of respondents are interested in traveling to space aboard a spacecraft in response to the 50th anniversary of the lunar landing on July 20.


The survey found that a majority of respondents said they would feel safe if a human-looking robot were piloting that spacecraft.  The survey looks at the influence of early Apollo mission technologies on society today and in the future.

Of the many innovations used today that the Apollo missions generated, when asked which items can trace their roots back to early space travel technology developments, the top three identified most frequently by those surveyed were the solar panel (65 percent), athletic shoe (40 percent) and heart defibrillator (32 percent).  Other respondents identified the cordless vacuum (28 percent), mattress (19 percent) and home security system (18 percent).

 Survey respondents indicated they believe that the next decade of space travel will have the greatest impact on:

  • Medicine (26 percent)
  • Transportation (23 percent)
  • Computer technology (21 percent)
  • Environmental resources (20 percent)

The Apollo 11 mission relied on four computers considered to be decades ahead of their time. Interestingly, though, today’s smartphone is many more times powerful than computers NASA used for the mission. When asked who they would video call from the moon with their smartphone if they ever had the opportunity, more than half (56 percent) of those surveyed said they would video call their spouse or partner.


The survey was conducted earlier this year among 381 attendees at the 2019 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, January 8 – 11, 2019.

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Jyoti Gazmer

A Mass Comm. graduate believes strongly in the power of words. A book lover who dreams to own a library some day. An introvert but will become your closest friend if you share mutual feelings about COFFEE. I prefer having more puppies over humans.

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